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Sharpening blades


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Hi, I was just wondering what you guys use for sharpening your planes, spokeshaves, drawknives, chisels, etc. Currently I just have a 6" bench grinder and I imagine I should invest in like a wetstone or something to that effect.

Let me know what works best for you, especially w/ the sometimes uncommon handtools that guitarmakers use.


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I use a wetstone, and mineral oils. That's for my knives and chizzles though. Overall, what i use for sharpening my knife edges on my floyd is a 5/8" round file.

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Ok, this is the best method ive found:

Grind to the applicable angle.

Set up a dead flat surface, plate glass is good. Place some 400 grit wet and dry sand paper on the glass (flat surface) and wet it.

Regrind the angle using the wet and dry as your "sanding stone"

Once the blade is all even, move on to 800 girt. Repeat

turn the blade over and go through the grits on the back of the blade. Keep it dead flat

Once your finished there (each of those two steps should take a minutes of two), move up to 1200 grit, but increase the angle slightly (a few degrees, not more than five). Umm, your doing the face again now, not the back...

You'll notice an extremely shiney cutting edge. Turn it over, and do the back with 1200.

Turn over and repeat the last two steps with 2000 grit.

You can now shave hair with the blade. (thats the official test).

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There are lots of options for sharpening. Each method has it's benefits and drawbacks. I read an article recently that compared the various products and techiniques and I seem to remember that the best results came from Norton waterstones (see woodcraft.com). I'll try to remember to dig up that article again tonight and see if I remembered right.

I currently have someone else do my sharpening but I plan to start doing my own soon. As I have mentioned in the past, I have enough trouble finding time to build so things like this, I'm willing to pay for.

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wet stone and either some mineral oil or very small amounts (barely a drop) of 3-in-1 household lubricant.

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